Pension Transfer Window: Things you must know


As the National Pension Commission (PenCom) prepares to issue final guidelines for opening Transfer Window as provided in the Pension Reform 2004 as amended in 2014, contributors and players in the industry would along the line encounter terminologies that may not have been popular with the reform programme since inception10- years ago.
This article therefore will try to bring up some of the terms in the PenCom draft guideline for the transfer of retirement savings account, recently exposed for stakeholders input:

Section 13 of the Pension Reform Act (2014) specifies that an employee may, not more than once in a year, transfer his Retirement Savings Account (RSA) from one Pension Fund Administrator (PFA) to another.
Definition of Terms
Pension Administration System (PAS) shall refer to a centralsystem to be domiciled at the National Pension Commission that would beresponsible for warehousing all data on pension matters relating to registeredcontributors/members.
“Registration Module” (RM) shall refer to a module of PAS thatwould be responsible for the receipt of requests from Pension FundAdministrators (PFAs)/Closed Pension Fund Administrators (CPFAs) for theregistration of contributors/members as well as Employer initiatedregistration in compliance with Section 11 (5) of PRA 2014 for the purposeof generation of a Personal Identification Number (PIN).
“RSA Holder” shall refer to registered contributors and retirees.
“RSA Transfer” shall referto the transfer of RSA from one PFA to another upon the request of the RSAholder within a calendar year and on the approval of the RTCM.
“Transferring PFA” shall refer to the PFA from which an RSA isbeing transferred.
“Receiving PFA” shall refer to the PFA to which an RSA is beingtransferred.
“Retiree” shall refer to an RSA Holder who ceases to make furthercontribution into his/her RSA as a result of permanent disengagement fromservice and has executed a Programmed Withdrawal Agreement withhis/her PFA.
“Legitimate RSA Holder” shall refer to an RSA Holder whoseidentity has been confirmed by the Receiving PFA as being the bona fideowner of an RSA being transferred.
“Voluntary Contributions” shall be deemed to be non-obligatorycontributions, made by an individual with the sole aim of providing retirementbenefits for a future date.
“RSA Transfer Form” shall refer to a document approved by theCommission and completed by an RSA Holder through a Receiving PFArequesting for transfer of an RSA from a Transferring PFA to a ReceivingPFA.
“RSA Transfer Clearing Module” (RTCM) shall refer to a moduleof PAS that would be responsible for coordinating the processes relating tothe transfer of RSAs from one PFA to another.
“Transfer Notification” shall refer to the receipt, by RTCM of aduly completed RSA transfer form from the Receiving PFA, in respect of anRSA Holder intending to transfer his/her RSA from a Transferring PFA to aReceiving PFA.
“Date of Receipt” of a transfer notification shall be deemed to be theday on which RTCM receives the duly completed RSA transfer form.
“Calendar Year” shall refer to a consecutive period of twelve months.
“Calendar Quarter” shall refer to a three-month period regardedas one of four parts of a calendar year. The 1st Quarter of every calendaryear shall be deemed to be the period between 1st January to 31st March,while the 2nd, 3rd and 4th Quarters shall be 1st April to 30th June, 1st July to30th September and 1st October to 31st December respectively. Therefore,where a transfer has been approved for an RSA within any quarter of acalendar year, such RSA shall not be eligible for another transfer untiltwelve consecutive months from the date of the last approved transfer.
“Effective Transfer Date” (ETD) shall refer to the last day of thelast month of a calendar quarter namely 31st March, 30th June, 30thSeptember and 31st December respectively.Notwithstanding the provisions of 2.1.15 above, where a transfernotification is received within the last month of a calendar quarter, the ETDshall be the last day of the last month of the following calendar quarter.
“Transfer Value Payment” shall refer to the balance standing inthe RSA as at ETD. This shall include accumulated contributions andaccrued rights paid into the RSA, plus all investment income earned andaccruable within the transfer quarter.
“Detailed RSA Transaction History” shall refer to a detailed andcomplete statement of account of an RSA Holder starting from July 2004 ordate of appointment if after July 2004 till ETD.
“Net Transfer Position” shall be the summation of all transfers toand from a particular PFA within a specified transfer period, netted-off toarrive at either a credit or debit position.
“Net Credit Transfer Position” shall refer to an amount by whichthe total transfer value of RSAs coming to a PFA exceeds the total transfervalue of RSAs leaving that particular PFA, within a calendar quarter.Where this occurs, the affected PFA shall expect funds inflow from other PFAs.
“Net Debit Transfer Position” shall refer toan amount by which the total transfer value of RSAs coming to a PFA isless than the total transfer value of RSAs leaving that particular PFA, withina calendar quarter. Where this occurs, the affected PFA shall be expectedto remit funds to other PFAs.
“Transfer Suspense Account” (TSA) shall refer to a generalledger account maintained by PFAs and PFCs, for the purpose ofwarehousing RSA balances to be transferred upon receipt of an approvedRSA transfer from RTCM. In addition, contributions received after ET